Living up to his nickname "Sweet" in showbiz circles, John Lapuspromised to give "unadulterated katamisan" for his close friends in theentertainment industry. For his 35th birthday last night, July 7, John threw asweetilicious party filled with yummy desserts, free-flowing drinks, and upbeatmusic by the band known as P-Side.
It's a rare event to see Kapamilya stars and Kapuso starscoming together for a special occasion and the 35th birthday celebration of Sweet was one. PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal)witnessed this recently during Sweet's party wherein his GMA-7 co-workers andhis former ABS-CBN colleagues were seated just tables apart from each other atthe Subarus restaurant-bar on Sgt. Esguerra St., Quezon City.
Sweet has been hosting GMA-7's Showbiz Central sincethe show started a year ago, but he is still co-managed by Star Magic ofABS-CBN. His transfer hasn't posed any problem between the two networks and, infact, some handlers of Star Magic have decided to pool their resources togetherand produce a show for Sweet this month.
"Kakatapos lang ng Sweetilicious [last May 31 atMusic Museum], pero sa July 26 meron akong post-birthday show titled HappyBirthday To Me na gagawin sa Zirkoh Timog. In a way, parang reunion ko nadin sa Star Magic."
Guests started arriving at around 10 in the evening topartake of the drinks and desserts and to give Sweet their heartfelt birthday wishes.Among those who attended were his Ako Si Kim Samsoon co-stars Eugene Domingo,Carmi Martin, and Arthur Solinap, with their executive producer, Edlyn Tallada-Abuel; fellow comedian Chokoleit; Meryll Soriano andher mother Bec-Bec Soriano; Jake Cuenca and Rafael Rosell, who came with girlfriend Malaya Lewandowski; and ABS-CBN executives Deo Endrinal and Roxy Liquigan.
When PEP asked John what makes his life sweet nowadays, heresponded candidly, "Wala nga, e, wala akong love life. Kaya na-conceptualize kona lang ‘to, dessert party, after your dinner punta kayo...habang nagsu-sugar-rush party, para masaya!"
What does he wish for his 35th birthday?
"Naku, ano pa ba?Kanina nga, galing ako sa thanksgiving mass na ginawa sa bahay ni RegineVelasquez for the success of Kim Samsoon. Nag-mass kami saka dinner forthe success of the show. Meron ding cake si Regine para sa akin, 'taposkinantahan nila ako.
"Sana tumaas pa yung ratings ng Kim Samsoon, at thesame time Showbiz Central as well. I'm the type of a person kapag mayginagawa, naka-focus ako dun. I put all my best, all my soul, into every projectI do."
SWEET'S GUESTS. Eugene Domingo is glad she works with Sweet in theGMA-7 romantic comedy Kim Samsoon.
"Masayang-masaya ako kasi kamimagkaaway dun, e. Masaya ako ‘pag nag-aaway kami," she deadpans.
In real life, does she and Sweet have arguments as well?
"Hindi pero lagi ko siyang pinapagalitan at tinatanggap lang niya," revealsEugene. "Lagi lang niya akong pinagtatawanan. Pinagsasabihan ko lang ‘pagnalulungkot lang siya masyado, ‘pag hindi nangyayari yung gusto niya. Kasiminsan nagiging sensitive siya; as a friend, dapat marunong ka ring magbigay ngbalance. Nandun ako para mag-encourage and to discourage sa mga nakakasira."
Eugene and Sweet are part of the Cinemalaya entry 100,which is one of the 10 full-length movies competing in the annual filmfest beginning this Friday, July 11.The movie chronicles how a cancer patient (played by Mylene Dizon) fulfills thelist of things that she wants to do before she dies. Eugene plays Mylene's bestfriend, while Sweet provides the fun component to her journey.
Meryll, the niece of Maricel Soriano, recalls how Sweetbecame part of her childhood memories. "Bata pa lang ako, parte na ng pamilyanamin ‘yan! Bata pa ako, namulat na ako kay Sweetness. He iseverything—nakakatawa, mabait, mataray, lahat ng hahanapin mo sa totoong taonasa kanya na, kaya matamis!"
The daughter of Willie Revillame is also participating inCinemalaya 2008 with two entries: Ang Concerto and Boses. AngConcerto, which is based on the life of Direk Paul Morales's ancestors,and tells about their experiences with the Japanese in Davao during World War II.
"First time kong mag-war film at kailangan kong mag-aralmag-piano kasi pianist ang role ko," narrates Meryll.
Before leaving the party, Jake Cuenca expressed hisappreciation for Sweet's support for the concert of the Coverboys last May. He also mentioned that he will soon be shooting a movie withShaina Magdayao under the direction of Rico Maria Ilarde.